It was a beautiful fall day when I caught my first glimpse of Guy. The day stirred with magic. We met through the personal ads in the local newspaper, and I felt it just added to the charm, for it was really love at first sight.
Oh, it’s autumn again! That splendid time of the year when trees adorn their best attire. Outfitted in shades of gold, scarlet, copper, they put on such a display that I will drive hundreds of miles to view their spectacular array. The air becomes crisp and sharp. The scent of burning leaves teases my senses. Defiant leaves catch the wind and dance to freedom; they flutter with abandon, for they enjoy their time and season.
A school bus arrives with many children chattering at once. Music from a radio competes with the bedlam. The bus whines to a stop. Laughing children shout farewell to their favorite friends as they tumble from the steps. A young couple files out quickly, for they do not want to lose touch with one another. A tender look passes between them as the young man slips his letter man jacket around the girl’s shoulders. They share a smile and hand in hand, they continue their stroll down the country lane. The children bounce and chatter around them. Dogs begin to howl. Some bark at the distraction; others welcome the noise, for soon their child will be home. Fall and all that it offers is so delightful. It reminds me to slow down and enjoy nature’s beauty. It brings thoughts of the past. I always reflect on unique relationships and special friendships, and of course, autumn always invites memories of Guy.
It was a beautiful fall day when I caught my first glimpse of Guy. The day stirred with magic. We met through the personal ads in the local newspaper. I felt it just added to the charm, for it was really love at first sight. He had a lopsided smile that tugged at my heart and warm brandy eyes that I swear could pierce into my very soul.
We both shared a love for the outdoors, and often, I fondly remembered our many wanderings. We spent many hours exploring the trails of Beaver Creek, especially, in the fall. We laughed and played and made havoc with the piles of colored leaves. Racing through the leaves, a cloud of glorious color rained upon us as we explored our favorite spot. We loved playing in the creek and followed the many trails.
My dear Guy was the quiet type, and he would intently listen when I needed someone to talk to and share my thoughts. Whenever I needed a friend, he would drop everything just for me. My friend characterized strength and courage, and he kept me from harm on more than one occasion. I shared many secrets with Guy. He knew my hurts and my fears. If I became angry, he would let me storm and rail until I got things straightened in my head and in my heart. My friend always accepted me; with Guy, I could always be myself. My friendship with him was a rare and priceless gift.
Mostly joy filled our years together. At times, however, I took him for granted and would spend endless hours away from home, yet Guy never complained. Feeling humbled and shamed, I would often race home and shower him with affection and plead with him to forgive me. He always did. He would smile at me as he showered me with kisses.
The years blended together, one by one. The familiar routine gave comfort. One quiet autumn evening, while clearing the table after dinner, I heard Guy slip outside to take a walk. I called to him, “Wait! Guy, wait” I want to go too!”
Guy didn’t hear me and continued with his outing, and I continued with the dishes, for I knew he would return soon.
As the evening slipped by, I worried about him. Guy had never been late before. In the middle of washing laundry, I heard a frantic knock at the door. Neighbors reported Guy’s accident; my Guy was struck by a car.
As hard as I tried to keep everything straight, the details blurred. I tried to stay calm. I tried not to notice the blood, all that blood, all Guy’s blood. I tried not to notice the broken jaw and broken leg. Speeding to the hospital, my thoughts raced in labored animation. I remembered every detail of our life together. The day we first met, playing and laughing together, endless talks, endless walks. My mind silently screamed, “This cannot be happening!”
But the nightmare was real. At the hospital, I cradled him and closely leaned in as Guy began slowly slipping away from me.
“Guy, do not leave me,” I sobbed.
Because of his injuries, Guy could not utter a sound. Still, his eyes spoke volumes and touched me somewhere deep inside. It was my turn to be strong for Guy. The time had arrived for me to support him; the time had come to let him go. I cradled him and whispered over and over, “I love you Guy. I love you Guy.”
My words echoed in the room and in my heart. Guy quietly died in my arms. Did he remember that it was fall?
Even now, after all this time, Guy still delivers bittersweet memories. A smile tugs at the corners, and I blink away my tears. Autumn always reminds me of Guy. I sprint into the house to the mantel over the fireplace. In the place of honor rests a picture of Guy, and my daughter Leslie. I smile and I even laugh, for the two conspirators, full of mischief, stare back at me. Leslie’s hair glistens, her brown eyes sparkle, and her smile still brightens my world. Guy glances away from the camera. He felt insecure about the studio’s strange surroundings that day. Leslie drapes one arm around his neck, and he snuggles close to her. The camera catches the warmth of his copper eyes even the sprinkling of bronze freckles across the bridge of his nose. His russet hair shines reflecting gold and amber highlights. Suddenly, it comes to me. My beautiful Brittany Spaniels, with his russet and white coat, his warm eyes, and even all his freckles is the very color of autumn. My special friend lives on. Guy frequents my thoughts, and he still visits fall’s warmth and beauty. Autumn is a magical season, and for me, Guy will always be a special addition to fall’s enchantment.
written in the fall of 1994 for a college English class